The hubby’s been sick for the last 2 weeks and hasn’t had much of an appetite. So, I made congee twice this week hoping it would make him feel better. But getting home after 6pm from work doesn’t leave me much time to make it. I definitely don’t have the 5 hours needed to make the stock and cook the rice as stated in the original congee recipe (from allrecipes) I posted a while back. Even with the shortcuts I took (pre-soaking the rice and cooking the stock for a shorter time), it still takes at least 3 hours. So, the last two times I made it, I made more modifications to the recipe:
1. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a small pot. Add 1 cup of rice and 1 tsp of sugar. (As suggested by a friend, the sugar helps to soften the rice faster.) Cover pot and turn down heat to simmer. Stir occassionally.
2. In another larger pot, add 10 cups of water and 4 bone-in skin-on chicken thighs. Bring to a boil. Add 2-3 green onions (chopped into 1-2 inch pieces), ginger (julienned), 3 tbsp Chinese rice wine and 1/2 tsp salt. Reduce heat to low-med and skim off any froth. Cook for 20 minutes.
3. Remove chicken from pot. Cool. Remove skin and bone and return to large pot. Shred chicken meat and set aside.
4. Cook chicken stock and rice separately for another 40 minutes. Ladle stock into pot with rice when liquid in the small pot reduces. Stir pot with rice occassionally and remove froth from stock if present.
5. Add stock (everything except the skin) to pot with rice. Add 1-1.5 tsp salt or to taste. Increase heat to med, cover and cook for another 30 minutes. Reduce heat to low-med if it boils over and stir occassionally.
6. Serve with shredded chicken, chopped green onions and julienned ginger.
Okay, so it still takes 1.5 hours to make, but good things are worth the wait. And the added bonus? It costs less than $5 to make.
Sniff…sniff, clears throat. Uh-oh….